Friday, June 5, 2009

Waiting for 2010 #22: Concerning Poseidon's Domain and Eastward

My mind makes its way eastward, across the North American continent, and over the Atlantic Ocean for this entry:

I blame my daily re-watching of Lost episodes (one per night), which enables my imagination to run wild whenever there is inconclusive news about the very real and very tragic Air France 447. The latest news is that the debris found in the Atlantic Ocean is not from the missing airplane. Like Atlantis before it, apparently Poseidon keeps it hidden from rescuers...or the recovery team, as it is presumed.

As we travel past Poseidon's domain, we find land.

Not being a globally-conscious political scientist by any stretch of the imagination (that also goes for the terms "globally," "conscious," "political," and "scientist" taken separately), I have been trying to figure out the how various democracies work and how various super-nation entities (like the European Union) function.

Yesterday was the beginning of the current cycle of European Parliament elections. The United Kingdom and the Netherlands had first crack at voting for their respective seats. The UK results will be revealed on Sunday (or Monday for some regions), and I applaud their patience. In the States, the news tends to project election results the same night and oftentimes call it when only 1% of precincts report. Maybe the news across the pond does the same. Sometimes I wish I had a satellite feed of the BBC and related channels. The 5 AM BBC news program (programme?) on PBS isn't the same, methinks.

From what I understand, the UK also held county elections of various kinds yesterday. For all the British National Party's anti-immigration alarmist efforts, making the most of their opportunity in this global economic downturn and multicultural zeitgeist, the BNP gained one local county seat in Lancashire. The seat is evidently the very first for the far-right, racialist party. I suspect the anti-BNP Brits (of all colours - take that, BNP!) are now cautious because their ideological enemy has a slight foothold in the democratic system. The county of Lancashire might suffer some sort of reputational backlash due to the unpopular result of the local vote. In any case, as long as the system of true cyclical elections and freedom remains, democracy is good. Let the extremists have their say but make sure it doesn't last forever. Vote them in; vote them out - but don't let those voted in change the system into totalitarianism.

And so we travel eastward a bit to the Netherlands. In the United States, 2008's cultural climate of a bad economy, one unjustfied war, one ignored justified war, and other factors led the majority of voters to reject a continuation of center-right/sometimes further-right government for a center-left/potentially further-left new administration. In the Netherlands, similar domestic and global conditions have led their voters to seek the far right. The potentially ironically named Freedom Party (akin to totalitarian North Korea's ironic official name - Democratic People's Republic of Korea) has apparently secured seats in the European Parliament.

Are both the UK's and the Netherlands' results a sign for things to come in Europe? Will anti-immigration, religious suspicion (notably against Muslims), and economic stuggles point to a far right solution, a possible fascist solution? Sure, the far right, when seeking votes, notes that Islamic theocracy (and related extremism and terrorism) is a form of fascism. But if the far right gains power, wouldn't their ultimate goal be some sort of totalitarian regime, which in line with right-wing ideology, is a form of fascism? I am certain that reality of the situation needn't be a dichotomy of Eurofascism vs. Islamofascism. Please consider freedom, liberty, democracy, education, a balanced amount of tolerance, justice, a non-alarmist amount of caution, and a rational amount of optimism in human progress (good change!) - all beyond the fear of totalitarianism.

Oh, civilized humanity and your ever-repeating, never-learning history - would you risk your own existence and ruin your own progress with a third World War? ::boom:: LOST

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